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Poll: Triangle residents want better transit options

Posted March 15, 2011

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— With gas prices on the incline, the Regional Transportation Alliance polled Triangle residents this month about a proposed half-cent sales tax that would fund expanded rail and bus services in Wake, Durham and Orange counties.

Nearly 60 percent of respondents in Orange and Durham counties and 51 percent in Wake County supported the sales tax, according to poll results released Tuesday. More than 75 percent of respondents in all counties said they felt they would benefit from enhanced public transit, according to the RTA.

"If gas were to increase to $4 a gallon, more than 20 percent of voters said that that would make them more likely to support the tax to improve transit options," said Paul Fallon of Fallon Research and Communications in Columbus, Ohio, the firm that conducted the poll.

Public transit to Research Triangle Park was the top priority for people polled in Wake County, and travel between counties ranked highest among those polled in Durham and Orange counties.

This is the third RTA poll – funded by area chambers of commerce – conducted since the approval of long-range transit plans in 2009, including a proposal for 51 miles of light rail from Chapel Hill to North Raleigh.

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  • nosuchmiracles Mar 18, 2011

    As someone who rides the bus every day to work and home, I can say, I rarely see empty buses or just half filled buses. The only time may be early in the morning and thats rare.

  • Just the facts mam Mar 16, 2011

    This poll is skewed - ignore it. There are some die-hards who keep trying to shove this down the rest of our throats... I am guessing they have a financial interest in it in some way.

  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT Mar 16, 2011

    No one called me for my opinion. Would love to know how they were able to selectively contact so many wild-spending liberals. ANY public transportation that is put in place will be greatly under-utilized in this area.

  • Bill Brasky Mar 16, 2011

    People are right, this city does not have enough density...but, another option to fix that problem would be a light rail system, where you have neighborhood connectors outside of the city(NW, N,NE..etc)connecting downtown. Basically, people will still have to travel using their own form of transportation, being a bike, golf cart or tricycle but only a few miles to a local station. Then the light rail will take you downtown, and downtown will be the HUB to take you to any other city.

  • harbourwoman Mar 16, 2011

    Seeing all these HUGE mostly 1/3 filled buses (less than 16 people), why doesn't the city of Raleigh go to an almost completely van-based service to save taxpayer money?

    If you have children or have needs that require you to be someplace mid-day "on time" and return on time, the Raleigh transit system seems lacking. In addition, how serious are we about it, when we barely provide places for people to wait for a bus during inclement weather?

    As a parent and a worker, life was too unpredictable to count on public transportation.

    I'd like to know if the current system actually draws a "profit" to pay for itself.

  • lb27608 Mar 16, 2011

    Newsflash: Maybe TT buses in Raleigh are empty, but they're not in Durham and Chapel Hill. The lines that run between Chapel Hill, Durham, and RTP are often full, especially at rush hour.

    Anyone care to provide evidence that the report is biased? Actual, real evidence?

  • LuvLivingInCary Mar 16, 2011

    oh yea...wait till gas is almost 4 bucks to do the survey. what a biased report. id ride a bike like the chinese before i'd ride a deisel guzzling bus

  • stopthespending Mar 16, 2011

    these systems are a total waste of taxpayer monies. ridership is unsustainable in a low density metro region such as ours. the entire system should be disbanded and the money used to complete the outer beltline.

  • me2you Mar 16, 2011

    Have a hard time believing this one.

  • Bill Brasky Mar 16, 2011

    I say lets move everyones trailers closer to the city, then we could pull off a mass transit system without any problems. So much for urban flight.

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